We’ve all seen that parent- the one who makes sure their child is in the school orchestra, the student counsel and captain of the tennis club all while looking over the kid’s shoulder. We all want to raise our children to be the best they can be. But how do we do this without being controlling and overbearing.
For starters if you make any attempt at controlling your child, their natural instinct is to rebel. So you can forget that approach before you even attempt to get it off the ground. Take inventory of your dynamic with your child and ask yourself how you interact with them.
If you determine you need to take a more passive stance on encouraging any extracurricular activity, be more suggestive in your implication. If you decide getting your child into an instrument is beneficial to their scholastics- which it is- rather than telling them you want them to play the violin, ask them if they were ever interested in taking up an instrument.
You may think you know what’s best for your child, and to some degree you do, but your child’s interests aren’t always your own. Taking a step back from when they are a toddler onward and watching them choose their own interests will help you discover who they are and what piques their interest. If you take them to sporting goods store and pick up an item of their own choice, it’s a possible indication you might want to sign them up for that sport.
As a parent, the best thing you can do is steer your child in the right direction. However, you can’t make them go out for the debate club, try out for football or join the AV club. As a parent you want to maintain the role of a silent observer before deciding what extracurricular organizations might be best for them.